The Japanese company Mazda has announced plans to develop a cogeneration system based on its rotary engine. The engine will burn natural gas to generate both heat and power. Experiments on a prototype are due to begin this year.

Mazda is the only company that mass produces rotary engines which it has used in its vehicles. The cogeneration unit is expected to have an output of around 40 kW. It will be aimed at small office buildings.

The development project is being supported by Hiroshima Gas Co, a regional gas utility in Japan.